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Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Happy Independence: Nigerian Government To Fund 40 Tech Startups

The minister for communication technology, Mrs Omobola Johnson, gave
this speech during DEMO Africa 2014:

Welcome to Nigeria, the most populous country and the largest economy
in Africa. Welcome to Lagos, Nigeria's commercial capital, a vibrant
mega-city and our melting pot. And for those of you, for whom it is
your first time in Africa, welcome to Africa, the rising continent.

Nigeria is particularly delighted to be hosting the third edition of
Demo Africa, arguably the most exciting place for African start ups to
be. Securing the hosting rights to this event this year is indeed a
validation of the Federal Government's renewed focus on the ICT
industry in general and the software development industry in
particular.

Africa is indeed rising but this has not always been the case.

On May 13th 2000, The Economist, an international current affairs
magazine, had on its cover page a silhouette of the African continent,
within it was the image of an armed guerrilla fighter; its caption
read: "The Hopeless Continent". Within the pages of that edition, the
prognosis on Africa encapsulated the prevailing beliefs held not only
by the majority of those living outside its borders, but also by those
that considered themselves 'trapped' within it. Africa – a starving,
poor, disease ridden, fractured, war-torn, corrupt, dying mass of
humanity … described by former UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair, as a
"scar on the conscience of the world".

Fast forward a decade; December 3rd 2011, the cover page of The
Economist bears the image of a boy running across a savannah landscape
at sunrise, flying a rainbow coloured kite shaped in the image of the
African continent. The caption reads: "Africa Rising". Within its
pages the magazine paints a scenario of dynamism, resilient
entrepreneurial activity, fledging…yet growing economies, nascent…yet
stabilising democracies, a population getting healthier and more
educated, an expanding middle class signifying a potential to even out
the distribution of wealth. An Africa, that is "getting its act
together". 54 countries of different ethnicity, culture, language and
different levels of development, home to 1.1bn people, the second
fastest growing regional economy (second to Asia) and home to more
than half of the world's fastest growing economies.

But not without its challenges, which IBM has encapsulated and coined
as Africa's Grand Challenges. These include education, access to
water, energy, healthcare, financial inclusion, public safety and
transport and agriculture.

The combination of an Africa Rising and one that still has to overcome
challenges represents a significant opportunity for African start-ups
especially those in the tech sector.

Mobile subscriptions in sub-Saharan Africa are forecasted to exceed
635 million by the end of this year (2014) and predicted to rise to
around 930 million by the end of 2019. The increase in the number of
mobile subscribers has fuelled increases in mobile internet use in
Africa and we are considered to be at the cusp of a mobile internet
revolution. Predictions are that mobile internet use in Africa will
increase twenty fold in the next five years … this is double the
estimated growth rate in the rest of the world. Lower priced devices
(in particular smartphones and tablets), increase investment in
network infrastructure, and increase availability of spectrum for
mobile broadband, are among the factors that will drive this growth.

One report that highlights this potential predicts that the Internet
can contribute up to 300 billion United States dollars to Africa's GDP
by 2025; and this is from an estimated 18 billion in 2013. This
translates directly to opportunities to generate income, to create
wealth, to create jobs, new business opportunities, economic
expansion, etcetera. The very opportunities African governments are
looking for and need to transform their economies and the economic
lives of their populations.

Over the next two days we will witness 40 African start-ups pitch
their solutions to these great opportunities and challenges with a
hope to secure funding and support to take their ideas and innovations
to the next level. I understand that in the two years of Demo Africa,
alumni have generated over $8m worth of investments, businesses and
partnerships. This is how you create jobs, new business opportunities,
expand economies, improve social well being of citizens.

Importantly, these outcomes also speak directly to our 'companies and
not code' philosophy in the Ministry of Communicaiton Technology. It
is good to show prowess in software development but it is even better
to develop businesses and companies that are powered by that software.
The recent IPOs of Twitter and Alibaba are testimonies of what is
possible.

I can't imagine that it is too often that you get this level of
government participation in DEMOs around the world. And this is
because government, innovation and entrepreneurship are rarely
mentioned in the same breath. But governments, indeed African
governments have an important role to play in catalysing the start up
industry as evidenced in the US and of course Israel.

The Nigerian government has done and will continue to do her bit to
support the software development industry
We are contributing to the development of a robust pipeline of
start-ups with our industry focussed Techlaunchpad software
competitions and our IDEA incubators and accelerators (last time in
this hall was to graduate 7 companies out of the hub). Today we have
added 70 start-ups to this fledgling but vibrant ecosystem and 4 IDEA
incubatees have emerged finalists for Demo Africa 2014.

In the next few days we will be conducting the first close of the
government seeded IT Innovation Fund. Government has committed $9m as
seed capital to this fund to be managed by EchoVC and we are literally
a month or so away from making our first investment in a number of
Nigerian/African tech start ups.

But there is still a lot to be done, infrastructure to be built to
connect more and more Africans to the internet, more ideas to be
birthed, more companies to be nurtured and more investments to be made
in these companies. African governments must support and sustain this.

I wish all the finalists well. I know this has been an exciting but
tough journey, but you have a great product, you have been extremely
well prepared to make your pitch, come up here and blow the judges
away, All the very best of luck.

Finally I would like to thank visitors from all over the world for
taking an objective view of the ebola virus disease risk and choosing
to travel to Nigeria for this important event. As we speak Nigeria is
not treating any cases of Ebola but we remain vigilant in the face of
the heart wrenching situations in other West African countries and are
doing everything we can to ensure that we remain ebola free.

Thank you.

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

First Ebola Case Diagnosed in the US

The first case of the Ebola virus disease on US soil has been
confirmed in Dallas, Texas.

Officials at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital say the unidentified
patient is being kept in isolation.

The man is thought to have contracted the virus in Liberia before
travelling to the US nearly two weeks ago.

"An individual travelling from Liberia has been diagnosed with Ebola
in the United States," Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Director Thomas Frieden told reporters on Tuesday.

According to Mr Frieden, the unnamed patient left Liberia on 19
September and arrived in the US the next day to visit relatives,
without displaying any symptoms of the virus.

Symptoms of the virus became apparent on 24 September, and on 28
September he was admitted to a Texas hospital and put in isolation.

The disease, which is not contagious until symptoms appear, is spread
via close contact with bodily fluids.

This is the first case of a patient developing the virus on US soil,
says the BBC's Alastair Leithead in Los Angeles.

Preliminary information indicates that the unnamed patient, who was
described as critically ill, was not involved in treating
Ebola-infected patients while in Liberia.

Health officials are working to identify all people who came into
contact with the unnamed patient while he was infectious.

Those people will then be monitored for 21 days to see if an
Ebola-related fever develops.

According to Mr Frieden, it is possible a family member who came in
direct contact with the patient may develop Ebola in the coming weeks.

BBC News

Pastor Anita Oyakhilome's Name and Photograph Removed From Rhapsody of Realities

Reverend Anita Oyakhilome's name has been excluded, as Co-Author from
the October-2014 edition of Christ Embassy's Daily devotional,
Rhapsody of Realities.

Her name and photo are completely missing from the front, back cover
and the daily exhortations inside.

The devotional, usually had Chris and Anita Oyakhilome as co-authors
and their photos behind and within.

The October edition of the Rhapsody of Realities is a special edition
that commemorates Nigeria's Independence and is usually given out on
the 1st on October.

You'll probably get yours tomorrow.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Big Bang Theory Is Wrong - Scientists

Scientists have come out to say "the big
bang theory" doesn't add up.

"The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill sent out a press release
Tuesday on a paper by UNC physics professor, Laura Mersini-Houghton,
who claims to have proven mathematically that black holes don't exist.
If the numbers are proven to work out, scientists will be forced to
"reimage the fabric of space-time" and "rethink the origins of the
universe."

Scientists have long thought that black holes were formed when a
massive star collapsed under its own gravity, creating a singularity
or single point in space with a gravitational pull so strong that even
light could not escape it. The singularity is thought to be surrounded
by an invisible membrane, known as the event horizon.

Scientists believe that the universe originated from a singularity
that began expanding with the Big Bang. If black holes don't exist,
then there was no singularity – meaning the theory is wrong and the
Big Bang may never have happened.

Mersini-Houghton's work says that before a black hole can form, the
dying star swells one last time and then explodes. A singularity never
forms nor does an event horizon. Therefore, no black hole can exist.

(http://www.inquisitr.com/1504854/big-bang-theory-wrong-and-black-holes-dont-exist-scientists-say-the-math-doesnt-add-up/)

Saturday, 27 September 2014

World Health Organization Declares Nigeria Ebola Free

The World Health Organization says the Ebola epidemic that has killed
2,811 in West Africa has been contained in Senegal and Nigeria.

The UN health agency said on Monday that Senegal had not reported any
new cases of the virus since the first case was reported on august 29,
while the last case reported in Nigeria was on September 8.

The incubation period for Ebola is 21 days and double that time must
pass without any new cases arising before a country can be deemed
transmission-free.

Both Senegal and Nigeria implemented strict measures to isolate the
virus and track down further possible cases. Guinea, Liberia and
Sierra Leone have failed to impose such steps, allowing the disease to
take hold.

The announcement came as Nigerian students prepared to return to
school after an enforced summer break because of Ebola.

The spread of the disease has threatened to undo progress made in
rebuilding Liberia and Sierra Leone after their wars of the 1990s, and
exposed the fragility of the state in Guinea.

(AIT News)

Photo credit: wikipedia

9ice Finally Quits Music For Politics

9ice seems to be very focused and intentional in everything he does.


In an interview with Sun News, 9ice revealed plans to quit music and concentrate fully on politics since he is going to 35yrs old and can't be singing at that age. excerpts below:

Yes, I want to leave music for politics. Next year January, I will be 35-years-old and I’m not praying to still be in music at that age.

I am serious about politics now. If you listen to my music, you would notice that politics has been part of me; it’s in my blood. When I started initially, I talked about being your brother’s keeper, and that’s why I studied Law at Lagos State University before I dropped out to concentrate on my music career. I hate when things go wrong. When two or three people are having issues, I love to get there to settle their differences. I have passion for politics and it has always been in my blood."

If you go fully into politics, most of your friends and fans will miss you?
I will say they will love me more by the time they see the plans that I have for them. I have so many plans on my mind.

Imagine if the late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti was a politician, he will not just criticize the mistakes of our leaders but also correct them. Imagine if Wole Soyinka was to be the president of this nation, people like him are only preaching the truth and criticising the government but they are not ready to get into politics to make corrections. I am tired of preaching, I want to contribute my own quota for the sake of my people. We have graduates riding commercial motorcycles (okada), selling meat etc, their certificates are not being used but they are shouting that the government is not doing well. There can’t be any change if the youths don’t stand-up now to do something to help the country.

I think I like this...enough of the talk, it's time to walk the talk.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Photo Of The Day: Whose Cup Size Is Bigger Kim or Kanye?


Just came across this picture and felt I should share it.

It was at the Lanvin Paris fashion week show. I always thought Kanye, had a very firm chest and abs to long for, but it looks like he is practically competing with his wife kim, for cup size, cleavage...is that a pot belly?

Anyway, like we all know, when you get married you are bound to add some pounds due to rest of mind and good food. So go Kanye, enjoy, but please try covering up a bit more or keep an appointment with a fitness instructor!

Just thinking out loud...lol!







photocred: Bossip

20yr Old Amani Terrell Walks The Street In Bikini To Promote Body Acceptance


For real?

Amani Terrell, a LA girl who weighs 260 pounds, just showed the world what self love really looks like!

The 20-year-old beauty showed off her curves in a bikini on Hollywood Boulevard Tuesday morning and it was all caught on camera. Terrell told Fox 11 News that her bold move was to promote body acceptance and inspire other women to love the skin they’re in, too.


“You cannot seek validation from other people,” she said. “This world is very cruel. You must seek validation within yourself and be kind to yourself.”


She went on to say that being plus-size women in Los Angeles is tough. “That’s all you see are thin women,” she explained. “I came up with this idea because I live in Hollywood and there’s this mass hysteria of perfection in this town. There’s a misconception that big women have low self-esteem. I don’t have low self-esteem.”


What more can we say.... but just for health reasons.... things that make you go hmmm....

Doctor Who Sexually Abused Female Patients Commits Suicide


Who then can you trust? Smh!

Via CBS News reports:

He worked with Johns Hopkins Hospital, which will have to pay out nearly $200 million to victims, in what may the biggest settlement of its kind.

CBS News correspondent Michelle Miller sat down with some of those patients.

Over two decades, Dr. Nikita Levy saw more than 12,000 patients, and his breach of trust seemed to know no boundaries. For the first time, we heard from his victims — young and old, even mothers and their daughters.

“I’m angry because I took my kids to him,” mother of two Stazi Simmons-Whitehead said. “I trusted him with my children – not only just me, but my kids.”

Simmons-Whitehead started seeing Levy in 2007 – her 14 and 15-year-old daughters two years later. Joshulyn Brown had been a patient for more than 25 years. In some ways, she felt as though her doctor crossed the line.

“Certain ways examinations supposed to go just didn’t feel comfortable,” Brown said. “But I thought I am young and na├»ve. Like, OK, maybe this is right. They are the professional one; I am just the patient. It just didn’t seem right.”

Ignoring their intuition, neither reported what seemed wrong at this East Baltimore clinic run by Johns Hopkins Medical Center. Neither knew the hospital required a chaperone present during examinations. Dr. Levy would always see them alone and had an uncanny fascination with a pen that hung from his neck.

“The pen,” Stazi said, “I used to tease him about the pen … because he played with it like it was a toy. And I’m like ‘Oh is that your toy?’ He was like ‘Oh it’s one of my favorite pens,’ so when news broke, I told my ex-husband, I said, ‘There was a camera in that pen. I guarantee you there was a camera in that pen.'”

There was more than just one. Dr. Levy had a collection of gadgets he used to secretly take thousands of sexually explicit pictures of his patients. In February of 2013, an office worker reported her suspicions to Johns Hopkins, and within five days, Dr. Levy was questioned and fired.

“Johns Hopkins had a policy of having chaperones present during these times of pelvic exams were done, and that was not being uniformly done,” said attorney Howard Janet.

Janet and attorney Jonathan Schochor led the class-action lawsuit against Johns Hopkins and interviewed more than 4,000 of Dr. Levy’s patients.

Schochor says Johns Hopkins dropped the ball.

“His breast examinations were inappropriate, his pelvics were too often and many without gloves,” Schochor said.

But what Johns Hopkins didn’t know, Schochor says it should have.

“He was reported to the charge nurses. He was reported to the other physicians. He was reported to any personnel they could find at the clinic,” Schochor said.

Johns Hopkins Medicine declined CBS News’ request for an interview and never admitted wrongdoing.

In a statement, they said they have, “…redoubled efforts to uphold the highest standards of patient privacy … and have implemented numerous steps to educate, inform and empower our staff to identify and alert us if they have concerns.”

Authorities never had the chance to charge Levy. He committed suicide just as a police investigation began.

And despite the settlement, not all victims feel a sense of closure.

“For me, no,” Simmons-Whitehead said. “I am a victim of sexual abuse, and you have to take baby steps. It’s just a little bandage to try to lay on the open scar,” Brown said. “But I am going to come out of it though because I am a survivor, you know. I believe she is as well, you know, it takes time to heal.”

Law enforcement authorities didn’t find any evidence that Dr. Levy had sold or posted any of his pictures on the Internet and consider the case closed.

The amount each patient will receive will be determined individually, based on the level of harm Dr. Levy committed against them.

Really sad! If you don't feel good about something stop!! "Intuition".

Soulja Boy Is Free To Sin No More After Paternity Test Comes Out Negative


According to TMZ:

Soulja Boy has consistently claimed he did NOT father a son 7 years ago … and now he has the paperwork to prove it.

The rapper’s ex-GF Diamond Shantaniece Mackey, had claimed Soulja, was her son’s biological dad, but he denied it. Last year, Mackey, unearthered a 2007 photo of herself and Soulja, in a bedroom — the year her son was conceived — so he finally agreed to take a paternity test.

TMZ obtained a copy of the results … which show Soulja, is NOT the father.

Sources close to Soulja Boy, tell us he’s pissed Mackey’s, been calling him a deadbeat dad. He also feels bad for the kid who still doesn’t know his father.

Really wonder what kind of girl doesn't know the father of her own child?! And Soulja, it means you've been laying around! You also guilty...just thinking.

Surrogate Drama - "It's Your Sperm Not My Egg So It's Your Baby"- Sherri Shepherd Tells Lamar Sally


Say What?!

Still in the midst of their divorce drama, Lamar Sally has been telling anyone who will listen for five minutes all about his marital woes with Sherri Shepherd and how she’s completely abandoned their child via surrogate. He says his campaign (and his lawsuit) has nothing to do with money…he just wants Sherri to make good on their agreement to be parents to the child they planned for. Via MailOnline:

Even before Sherri Shepherd married Lamar Sally, she was begging to have a child with the Los Angeles-based scriptwriter.

‘I don’t want to be an old mother,’ the 47-year-old ex co-host of The View told him.

‘Actually, that is one of the reasons we married after only a year – because she was ready to do this,’ Sally told MailOnline in an exclusive interview. ‘I wanted to wait another year or two to get married but having a baby with me was so important to her I said OK, let’s do it.’

But Sherri’s eggs were not viable, so the couple decided on surrogacy, using Sally’s sperm and a donor egg. Their baby was born to a surrogate on August 5. But Sherri wants no part of it.

And now Sally is embroiled in a nasty divorce battle with his estranged wife and the newborn is at the center of the conflict. Sherri wants nothing to do with the baby and furious Lamar is fighting for Sherri to take responsibility emotionally and financially for the child that she wanted so desperately.

As 44-year-old Sally croons to his son, Lamar Jr., he says he was blindsided by Sherri’s sudden departure from his life and her cold refusal to recognize their baby.

‘To this day, I cannot pinpoint one thing that caused us to split up,’ he tells MailOnline..’Honestly I do not know what happened. No one was cheating, we didn’t fight much and we didn’t have money problems.’

Sally says once Sherri was done with him, she was also done with this baby she was so desperate to have with him, with no explanation. Contrary to some rumors, Sally says the surrogate was a third party that neither he nor Sherri knew prior to their arrangement.

‘Finding the surrogate was a long process,’ Sally explains. ‘From the time we decided to do this and finding the right person took about 8 months. So that’s why I don’t understand why Sherri can say I duped her into this or that she is not responsible for this child. It’s mind boggling to me.

‘We went through an agency. You go on their web site and list your profiles and then we interviewed a few people.

‘The woman we finally selected is 5’10”, very athletic. She was once a volleyball player. She’s a vegetarian but was willing to drink protein shakes to make sure the baby would be healthy. But while the surrogate was pregnant Sherri decided she wanted to get a divorce.

‘I was absolutely floored by that but then she decided she didn’t want the baby either. Sherri told me, “it’s your sperm, not my egg so it’s YOUR baby”

‘It was like she had ripped my heart out of my chest, this was not the Sherri I knew and not the woman I fell in love with and married,’ Lamar says.

After the baby was born on August 5, Sherri did not want to know anything about him, didn’t want to see him and would not allow the baby to be on her SAG (Screen Actor’s Guild) insurance even though Sally’s attorney claimed it could be ‘without prejudice,’ until their court case was finalized.
‘But she still said no,’ says Sally.

‘My attorney tried to convince Sherri that it would not reflect on the case at all and that it would not imply that she was taking responsibility as a parent to have the child on her insurance but she still refused and told me to get on Medicaid.

Sally ended up getting Medi-cal, California’s welfare program for health insurance,for the baby. The government is now going after the surrogate for child support.

‘Since Sherri’s name is not on the birth certificate by law the birth mother’s name is filed on the certificate.’

Lamar claims that the surrogate is being held responsible for helping him in supporting the baby.

‘The surrogate is a single 23-year-old waitress, who has two children of her own, and now is being hit with this awful situation.

‘We paid her $30,000 to be our surrogate and it helped out her family a lot but now it’s becoming an awful burden and I feel horrible about it and Sherri doesn’t care one bit.’

‘Sherri just walked away from a marriage, a husband and a baby without looking back. And these are all of the things she said she wanted!

She recently offered $150,000 to make me go away but it was unacceptable. I want her to co-parent with me like we agreed. Sherri is the one who initiated the surrogacy and we agreed to do this together, she wanted this child more than anything.

‘Sherri made $3 million last year and offers $150,000 for a lifetime of care for a child? No way, we’re going to court.

Oops...things that really make you go hmmm.... Peeps, what do you think...just speechless!

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